Fun Barb Facts For Kids

Moumita Dutta
Nov 14, 2022 By Moumita Dutta
Originally Published on Aug 05, 2021
Edited by Luca Demetriou
Fact-checked by Spandana Kantam
Barb facts are quite interesting
Age: 3-18
Read time: 7.4 Min

Barb, also called barbel, is a small-sized group of fish that are found in the lakes across the southern hemisphere and natural freshwater rivers. However, the barb is also considered to be an insult in slang terms. There are over 2,000 known species of barbs in the world inhabiting the freshwater regions of Eastern and Southern Europe, now extending somewhat to Asia, Africa, and Southern America. The barbs are regularly alluded to as freshwater sharks, because of the way that barbs are one of only a handful few types of new water fish to have lines of teeth in their mouths. In spite of being little size, barbs are known to be prevailing hunters and brutal trackers in the realm of little fish in their regular habitat. Barb doesn't just go after the fish that are more modest in size than them, yet in addition, medium estimated fish that can once in a while be twofold the size of the barb when there is the absence of food.

Because of their brilliant tones and little size, barbs are ordinarily kept in family aquariums around the world. The most well-known barbs kept in aquariums are the tiger barb (silver body with thick, dark stripes and red balance on its gut), cherry spike (pink/red in shading), black ruby barb (similar look to the mainstream tiger barb, the male black ruby barb accepts a striking dark red shading when arriving at the reproducing age), denison barb ( fish with brilliant stripes), gold barb (in nature they are green, however, the gold-hued half and half has become so famous that it is generally the lone shading ready to move), stingray barb and some more.

Barb barbus are known to be generally a popular strong fish and can adjust to changes in the water remembering changes in pH levels. Because of their forceful and predominant nature, it isn't ideal to keep barbs in tanks with more modest types of exotic fish. To learn about more popular facts regarding the barb fish, plus about the tiger barb and this family of fish, continue to read this article. If you like this article, here are some other species of fish to learn about if you like a barb, read on to discover facts about the swai fish and skate fish.

Barb Interesting Facts

What type of animal is a barb?

A barb (Barbus) is a small ferocious fish.

What class of animal does a barb belong to?

A barb belongs to the Animalia kingdom of the Actinopterygii class. Its scientific name is Barbus barbus.

How many barb are there in the world?

There are more than 2000 species of barb in the entire world but the exact count of the population is not estimated as of now.

Where does a barb live?

They are found in the Eastern region and Southern Europe, ranging from the Alps to Lithuania to North and East from the Pyrenees, Northern Black Sea bowl, and Russia, additionally in Scotland, Italy and Morocco. Presently they are stretched out to Asia, Africa, and South America.

What is a barb's habitat?

In spite of the fact that barbs are local to eastern streaming freshwater waterways in England, they have truly been trans-located to western streaming streams, like the River Severn. Its supported living spaces are the so-called barbel zones in quick streaming waterways with rock or stone bottoms, despite the fact that it consistently happens in more slow streams and has been effectively supplied in still waters.

Who do barb live with?

This species is known to share its space with similar species due to their aggressive and dominant nature. It is not ideal to keep barbs with smaller species of tropical fish. It will hunt the small or medium-sized fish if there is a lack of food. However, barbs can also stay with a much larger species of fish.

How long does a barb live?

The approximate life expectancy of a barb fish is about 20 years. However, life expectancy may vary if kept in captivity.

How do they reproduce?

Reproducing happens in May and late June on most waterways when males gather in shallow water in the quest of mates. Upstream relocation to reach spawning grounds happen in March and May, contingent upon water temperature. However, males become adults following three to four years, females following five to eight years. Females produce between 8,000-12,000 eggs for every kilogram of body weight, which is treated by the males as they are delivered and stored in a shallow excavation in the rock of the riverbed. Barbs cover their eggs underneath the rock. This species can produce on numerous occasions when kept in captivity and there is additional proof for different generating both of people or across the populace, in wild waterways.

What is their conservation status?

According to International Union for Conservation of Nature or IUCN Red List, this species is 'Least Concern' for now. The total population is still unknown. There are though different threats which include threats posed by humans and as well nature.

Barb Fun Facts

What do barb look like?

The barbs have smoothed undersides, sloping temples, thin bodies, and evenly arranged pectoral blades helping with waterways, and assisting with keeping the barb near the riverbed in solid streams. Little fish are for the most part dim and mottled in appearance, grown-ups are ordinarily dim caramel, dim or bronze in shading with a pale underside, with particularly red or orange-hued blades, like for the tiger barb. The projections of the tail are asymmetrical, the lower flap being adjusted and marginally more limited than the sharp upper lobe.

How cute are they?

This little species can definitely be termed as cute with their appearance, the stripes and different colors glisten beautifully in the water, such as with the tiger barb family.

How do they communicate?

There are various ways by which these fishes communicate, however the famous way is by nipping at one another, so to try not to associate these fish in with, slow-moving, timid, or long-finned fish like neon tetras, angelfish, guppies or bettas.

How big is a barb?

We can get adult barbs reaching up to 4 ft in length and 26 lb in weight, although it is typically found at smaller sizes 19 -39 in or 50 –100 cm and can weigh up to 2.2-6.6 lb or 1-3 kg.

How fast can a barb swim?

Barbs are dynamic fish and frequently travel significant distances in search of food and safety, in a very brief timeframe. They can move somewhere in the range 9.9-42.3 m in a year, with mean (normal) everyday development somewhere in the range of 26 and 139m. The baby barbs likewise accomplish this speed at some point with a great experience.

How much does a Barb weigh?

Adult species can reach 26 lb, but, generally, we get smaller species that weigh around 2.2-6.6 lb.

What are their male and female names of the species?

There are no specific names given to the males and females. We can take barbs as the common term for both.

What would you call a baby Barb?

The baby barb is called fry.

What do they eat?

Barbel are dangerous to smaller types of fishes.

Most barbs are omnivorous and will intake with color flakes, aqueous tropical flakes, shrimp pellets, and tropical granules with thriving energy. Frozen and live food varieties can likewise be taken care of to help actuate generating in the event of captivity. In the wild, they generally intake green growth, additionally more modest fishes, and surprisingly at times medium fish as well in times of scarcity of food.

Are they dangerous?

They can be dangerous to the smaller and medium-sized fishes those who share habitat with them but of course, they are not dangerous to humans.

Would they make a good pet?

Because of their small size and bright colors, they are also kept in aquariums in family households. So that is a big yes, they do make a good pet experience. The most common barbs kept in aquariums are the cherry barb and the tiger barb. People are fascinated by the colorful tiger barb and cherry barb. For keeping barbs as a pet, six tiger barbs are mandatory to keep together.

Did you know...

A few fish categories like cherry and gold barbs can be kept in 10-20 gallon aquariums. Huge species like denison barbs will require a 55 gallon aquarium or bigger when full size, whereas more modest ones like blushing, tiger, and dark ruby barbs require at least 30 gallons. Grown-up tinfoil barbs will require a 125 gallon or bigger aquarium. Barbs do best in schools of at any rate 6-10 fish and need a greater amount of swimming space. They will be less pushed and show their best tones in a very much embellished aquarium. Dull substrates and designs will help draw out the splendid shades of the barbs.

Do people eat barbs?

Not all the breeds of this fish, but the giant barb was once an important food fish, with its meat popular to eat and pickle among people in Cambodia, Thailand, and Laos.

How do barbs breathe?

Like all other fishes, barbs breathe with gills. Hence, they require a consistent supply of oxygen. Gills are present under the gill slit or the operculum.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly animal facts for everyone to discover! Learn more about some other fish including codfish, or fluke fish.

You can even occupy yourself at home by drawing one on our Barb coloring pages.

Barb Facts

What Did They Prey On?

Small fishes, shrimps, insects, bloodworm

What Type of Animal were they?


Average Litter Size?


How Much Did They Weigh?

2.2 - 6.6 lb (1 - 3 kg)

What habitat Do they Live In?

wetlands, freshwater

Where Do They Live?

northern and eastern europe

How Long Were They?

19 - 39 in (50 - 100 cm)

How Tall Were They?








Scientific Name

Barbus barbus

What Do They Look Like?

Yellow, red, black, white, orange, silver

Skin Type


What Are Their Main Threats?


What is their Conservation Status?

Least Concern
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Written by Moumita Dutta

Bachelor of Arts specializing in Journalism and Mass Communication, Postgraduate Diploma in Sports Management

Moumita Dutta picture

Moumita DuttaBachelor of Arts specializing in Journalism and Mass Communication, Postgraduate Diploma in Sports Management

A content writer and editor with a passion for sports, Moumita has honed her skills in producing compelling match reports and stories about sporting heroes. She holds a degree in Journalism and Mass Communication from the Indian Institute of Social Welfare and Business Management, Calcutta University, alongside a postgraduate diploma in Sports Management.

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